Centralia’s Role in Sexploitation Films

By History Department | October 17, 2013 |

Roy GardnerMany of us have heard the incredible story of the capture of FBI’s most wanted Roy Gardner at what is today’s McMenamins Olympic Club Hotel (Centralia, Wash.) in 1921. While his arrest is an amazing tale, the story only continued to get more and more interesting… And lurid. And colorful. And weird.

Read More

Northwest Portland Baseball Star Johnny Pesky

By History Department | October 9, 2013 |

This is Johnny Pesky, one of the most beloved figures in Boston Red Sox history. He spent 61 years with Boston as a player, coach, manager and broadcaster.

Johnny Pesky on the Boston Red Sox Baseball TeamHe was born John Michael Paveskovich right here in the Slabtown neighborhood of Northwest Portland, Oregon. As a kid, Pesky spent virtually all of his free time at Vaughn Street Ballpark (open from 1901–1955), which stood at Northwest 24th & Vaughn – just three blocks from the Tavern & Pool. He and his buddies also hung out and played pool at the tavern, owned at the time by the uncle of one of Johnny’s good friends. Pesky first signed with the Red Sox in 1939 at the urging of his mom. According to a story in the Daily News, several teams were after Johnny, but a scout from the Red Sox sealed the deal by wooing his mom with flowers and his dad with bourbon.

Read More

McMenamins on the Columbia

By History Department | October 1, 2013 |

McMenamins on the Columbia hosts the Annual IPA Invasion every fall. Try a few of the hoppy, high-ABV beers on tap from both McMenamins and guest brewers.

• • •

Not only does McMenamins on the Columbia offer stunning views of the river, but there is quite a bit of history there, as well.

This pub is a fantastically scenic spot to have a beer – settle in at an outside table during sunny weather to watch the boats sail by or take a table indoors to watch stormy weather head upriver toward the Gorge.

But it wasn’t that long ago, during WWII, that this area was a bustling, bristling wartime manufacturing area. One of the famous Kaiser Shipyards was located at this very spot. As shown in this photo, there were berths for upwards of 18 ships at a time, in all stages of production.

Kaiser Ryan Point Shipyards on the Columbia River, 1940s

Read More

Frank T. Johns: Socialist Candidate for President, 1928

By History Department | September 26, 2013 |

Frank T. Johns, Socialist Candidate for President, 1928On May 20, 1928, 39-year-old Frank T. Johns was campaigning as the Socialist Labor Party’s nominee for President of the United States. Johns was facing Republican Herbert Hoover and Democrat Al Smith at the peak of the Roaring ’20s. This Portland native and former carpenter made Bend, Oregon, his first stop on a nationwide campaign trail.

Suddenly, screams rang out.

A ten-year-old boy named Jack Rhodes had been fishing for trout along with several buddies. But he had fallen from a footbridge and into the water, clinging to the bridge while his friends desperately tried to get to him. Johns threw off his coat and dove into the icy river.

Read More

Portland Ice Arena, 1914–1918

By History Department | September 26, 2013 |

The Portland Ice Arena (a.k.a. the Marshall Street Ice Rink) was a 2,000-seat multi-purpose arena located at NW 20th Ave. and Marshall St. At the hippodrome’s completion, the Oregonian enthused, “This city will be able to boast of the largest rink of its kind in the world.”

While the rink was home to the Portland Rosebuds Pacific Coast Hockey Association franchise from 1914 to 1918, the general public was also invited to enjoy the ice.

Portland Rosebuds Hockey Team, 1916

Read More

Racer X

By History Department | August 29, 2013 |

This piece by artist Joe Cotter hangs on the 2nd floor of Edgefield and depicts one of the original Edgefield “artists” – Racer X – hard at work.  

Racer X

Between 1982 and 1989, the poor-farm-turned-old-folks-home-turned-county-eyesore stood empty. Well, sort of empty – along with the blackberry bushes, the mice, snakes and other invaders came a band of merry pranksters armed with spray paint. One of these (or maybe all of them, who knows?) went by the slightly unoriginal moniker Racer X.

Read More

McMenamins’ Merman

By History Department | August 22, 2013 |

MermanThis work is by McMenamins artist Jenny Joyce, and it currently hangs upstairs at the Lighthouse Brewpub in Lincoln City, Ore.

Here’s what Jenny has to say about it…..

Read More

The Vast Continuum….

By History Department | August 9, 2013 |

con·tin·u·um /k?n?tinyo?o?m/
Noun · A continuous sequence in which adjacent elements are not perceptibly different from each other, although the extremes are quite distinct.

MyrnaPieceThis detail (taken from a panel by artist Myrna Yoder) hangs in a back corridor at the Kennedy School and depicts a festive gathering outside of the Little Red Shed at McMenamins Edgefield-the old county poor farm in Troutdale, Ore. While it may initially seem out of place at Kennedy, its inclusion is no mistake; rather, it is a conscious expression of the continuum that exists among our places.

Read More

Did You Know about the Bombing?

By History Department | July 31, 2013 |

Fuegy storeThe Rock Creek Tavern is a gorgeous spot, nestled among the quiet hills and dales of Hillsboro, Ore. It’s a fantastic place to enjoy a cold pint beneath the trees while you listen to the sounds of the countryside and laze away a few hours of your day.

But its history hasn’t always been so serene…

Did You Know about the Bombing?

Read More

Barley Mill Pub 30th Anniversary

By History Department | July 25, 2013 |

The Barley Mill Pub (1629 SE Hawthorne, Portland) celebrated its 30th anniversary on Saturday, June 22, 2013. The pub was the first joint-venture of the brothers McMenamin, so we celebrated the property itself, as well as what that first foray has meant for the company at large.

Anniversary Lunch MuralIf you’ve been to the Barley Mill, you know that the place is festooned, adorned, bedecked and bejeweled with years and years of anniversary artwork. However, among the shining handcrafted gems (and some not-so-glittery efforts), hangs this mural by McMenamins artist Jenny Joyce.

Read More